CT Health Department calls season’s flu outbreak widespread
The state Health Department is reporting a big increase in flu cases across Connecticut and is now calling this season's outbreak widespread.
The most recent statistics show there have been 527 positive tests for flu reported from Aug. 26 through Dec. 22 - a smaller number than the actual cases out there. A total of 162 people were hospitalized, and three people have died.
Bridgeport Hospital's infectious disease specialist Dr. Goran Miljkovic says there's been an increase in admissions for flu there recently, especially with pregnant women.
Miljkovic also says the best way to protect oneself is the flu vaccine. He says this year's vaccine appears to be effective.
"The type of strains we are seeing--which is mainly H1N1--is present in the vaccine, and it should give adequate protection to patients," says Miljkovic.
The doctor says there's no downside to the vaccine despite some misconceptions out there.
He tells News 12 that even if someone contracts the flu after getting vaccinated, the severity of the illness will be much milder.
The Health Department says of the three deaths this flu season, two people were older than 65, and the other was between 50 and 64 years old.
Last year, a 10-year-old New Canaan boy and a 6-year-old Norwalk girl were among those who died from the flu.